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Franklin could be a star in Green Bay

USC v UCLA Getty Images

When the Packers picked Eddie Lacy at the bottom of round two, I thought they should have waited for UCLA running back Johnathan Franklin.

Ultimately, they did.

At the bottom of round four, the Packers added Franklin, a versatile, three-down back who can run, catch passes, and block.  One of the fastest running backs at the Combine, he’s a perfect fit for the West Coast offense.

So with Franklin and Lacy (wasn’t there a cop show by that name?), the Packers have a couple of new toys for an offense that typically passes to set up the pass.  Though there could be an issue with getting everyone enough reps and touches to keep them happy, the Packers have addressed a chronic need in a big way.

And don’t be surprised if it’s Franklin, not Lacy, who emerges as the better NFL player.

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32 Responses to “Franklin could be a star in Green Bay”
  1. jhein23 says: Apr 27, 2013 3:18 PM

    I like that the Packers finally realizing they need a running game to get teams out of the deep cover 2 look that’s been stalling their offense a bit since late 2011. Still think they only have 2 really good offensive lineman though – Sitton and Bulaga. TJ Lang would be better at center. So left side of the line still iffy in my opinion.

  2. thesteelers says: Apr 27, 2013 3:20 PM

    Or not…

  3. shaggytoodle says: Apr 27, 2013 3:21 PM

    I dig it, draft the guys that can thrive in the scheme try to develop them, Starks had his chances, was great the year of the Superbowl, but I believe he has been in the dog house for most of last year.

    Hopefully the injury bug won’t bite as hard as previous years, and the Packers can make the playoffs and see what happens from there on in.

  4. iamthorny says: Apr 27, 2013 3:23 PM

    Jim Mora Jr. called him, “Warrick Dunn reincarnate”…

    Just PLEASE don’t put him on the cover of CAT FANCY…

  5. thehatefulnerd says: Apr 27, 2013 3:24 PM

    He is also a perfect fit for the Run and Shoot…

  6. deltaoracle says: Apr 27, 2013 3:32 PM

    Packer offense now officially hell on wheels, and Cedric Benson need not apply. Love that they got Bakhtiari too; he can play all along the line and do it well. Rest of the draft should be all DL and S except for maybe a backup QB.

  7. axespray says: Apr 27, 2013 3:36 PM

    NFC East/AFC North/NFC North x2/SF/ATL….

    We better learn to run the darn ball.

  8. rgledz says: Apr 27, 2013 3:43 PM

    Wake me when there is something other than a Packer post. Thanks PFT.

  9. greysolon says: Apr 27, 2013 3:44 PM

    Great pick. He’ll be very useful in that offense.

  10. brettpall22 says: Apr 27, 2013 3:46 PM

    From a Niners fan, I must say that I’m very impressed by Green Bay’s draft so far. All of the picks, especially the two running backs are great pics. I’ve watched Franklin at UCLA his entire career, and you guys got a STEAL! He is simply a dynamic running back, and he always reminded me of Frank Gore in his early prime. Congrats Packers fans.

  11. shutupandfknlisten says: Apr 27, 2013 3:48 PM

    I’m surprised he fell so much. Franklin looked like a mid-2nd rounder coming into the draft. Good pick by the Packers.

  12. bowmanj35 says: Apr 27, 2013 3:51 PM

    kinda funny, how many times you guys gonna use the term “passes to set up the pass”. every packers post…. get some new material.

  13. randolph32 says: Apr 27, 2013 4:07 PM

    My Bad, it was Gag Me and Lace Me…

  14. nachoface says: Apr 27, 2013 4:08 PM

    Fantastic pick. Packer offence will be scarier than two years ago when they went 15-1.

  15. packownsu says: Apr 27, 2013 4:16 PM

    brettpall22 says:
    Apr 27, 2013 3:46 PM
    From a Niners fan, I must say that I’m very impressed by Green Bay’s draft so far. All of the picks, especially the two running backs are great pics. I’ve watched Franklin at UCLA his entire career, and you guys got a STEAL! He is simply a dynamic running back, and he always reminded me of Frank Gore in his early prime. Congrats Packers fans.

    Nice to see fans with class like you who are totally unlike all these viking fans.

  16. tokyosandblaster says: Apr 27, 2013 4:21 PM

    brettpall22 says:
    Apr 27, 2013 3:46 PM
    From a Niners fan, I must say that I’m very impressed by Green Bay’s draft so far. All of the picks, especially the two running backs are great pics. I’ve watched Franklin at UCLA his entire career, and you guys got a STEAL! He is simply a dynamic running back, and he always reminded me of Frank Gore in his early prime. Congrats Packers fans.

    13 2

    —–

    I have to say I like what the niners did, too. I think they jumped in front of Seattle twice. Ried and Lattimore are great.

    Packers and niners should be a great rivalry this decade, provided the Packers can tackle your QB.

  17. gbpshareholder says: Apr 27, 2013 4:28 PM

    Looks to me like Lacy could build a career as a West Coast offense 3rd down/short yardage RB, with Franklin being the main back in an offense that only wants their RB’s to get 20 to 25 touches per game… way to go TT…. GO PACK GO!!!

  18. johnelwayishorsefaced says: Apr 27, 2013 4:55 PM

    Wait I thought Franklin was supposed to be a better back than Le’veon Bell. Just like Montee Ball was and Eddie Lacey was and on and on and on…
    Good thing for Bell that most NFL GM’s are smarter and know more about football than the average fan.

  19. nflfollower says: Apr 27, 2013 5:18 PM

    Certainly makes more sense than lacy in their offense. But of course, they likely viewed lacy as too good a pick to pass in the late 2nd.

  20. raideralex99 says: Apr 27, 2013 5:24 PM

    Wow … coming out of the NFC is going to be a biotch … A lot of strong teams while in the AFC there’s what 2-3 teams fighting for that SB spot.

  21. Rick Spielman is a Magician says: Apr 27, 2013 6:03 PM

    It’s nice that the Packers are finally realizing that you actually do have to run the ball in the NFL, but the key to the running game is more the offensive line than the running back and they haven’t done much to address that. Witness Adrian Peterson with a terrible offensive line in 2011 vs. Adrian Peterson with a good offensive line in 2012.

  22. filthymcnasty1 says: Apr 27, 2013 6:23 PM

    Your chances of becoming a star are always better when your drafted in Titletown.

  23. prmpft says: Apr 27, 2013 6:45 PM

    iIwouldn’t be at all surprised – just because you’re a runningback from alabama doesn’t mean you are worth what they paid you – see: ingram, mark – N.O. Saints…

  24. riverace19 says: Apr 27, 2013 7:25 PM

    Unless the Packers can set good edges and contain Kaepernick, or Wilson, all these supposed good picks aren’t going to end up in more wins on the field

  25. apm says: Apr 27, 2013 7:30 PM

    The only Packer who complains about “touches” is Jermichael Finley, who looks to be set up for a put up or shut up season. Can’t wait.

  26. tokyosandblaster says: Apr 27, 2013 7:58 PM

    riverace19 says:
    Apr 27, 2013 7:25 PM
    Unless the Packers can set good edges and contain Kaepernick, or Wilson, all these supposed good picks aren’t going to end up in more wins on the field
    —–

    1) the Packers were really 12-4 last year. Everyone knows it. I’m not sure how many wins you want them to have, but if they finish 12-4 ill be ok with it.

    2) if Wilson and kaepernick try to have too many games like San Fran had vs the Packers, those qbs won’t make it halfway to through the season.

    3) the main reason the packers looked (admittedly) terrible vs the playoffs last year is no longer with the team. I’m betting the packers learned from their mistakes.

  27. banlarson says: Apr 27, 2013 9:12 PM

    He’ll do well the 4 times the Packers actually hand the ball off, along with those 4 OT’s they drafted. I guess when you don’t know what to pick, just pick 4 of everything and hope one of them turns out to be NFL capable. Either way when they turn 29 or have to pay them the Packers will let them go. What a miserable organization to play for.

  28. fearthehoody says: Apr 27, 2013 9:44 PM

    UCLA season tix holder for 4 years now and this guy is legit! Seen all of his games, reminds me of Detroit’s former RB Kevin Jones

  29. cusoman says: Apr 28, 2013 11:01 AM

    Every year GB does something that perks up the hopes of the Pack faithful that a running game will emerge, and every year it falls flat on its face – I see this year ending no different and it makes me wonder if the organization just doesn’t know how to condition and use them properly in an offense.

    (Hey, if Pack fans can continually make fun of our QB situation, we can do the same with their RB situation – two sides of the same coin – we got MVP in one, you have MVP in the other)

  30. filthymcnasty1 says: Apr 28, 2013 7:39 PM

    cusoman says: Apr 28, 2013 11:01 AM

    Every year GB does something that perks up the hopes of the Pack faithful that a running game will emerge, and every year it falls flat on its face – I see this year ending no different and it makes me wonder if the organization just doesn’t know how to condition and use them properly in an offense.

    (Hey, if Pack fans can continually make fun of our QB situation, we can do the same with their RB situation – two sides of the same coin – we got MVP in one, you have MVP in the other)

    ***********************************************

    Please don’t compare the hapless, tasteless Vikings to the Packers. Green Bay has 13 World Championships.

  31. vfan76 says: Apr 28, 2013 11:34 PM

    It’s funny how all you Packer Fans think you have just drafted the next AP or MJD.

  32. tokyosandblaster says: Apr 29, 2013 3:25 PM

    Actually, I don’t see anyone who has said that.

    Find me one.

    Post after you find one.

    But only then.

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